THE GODMOTHER PART 27

EPISODE 27

Just as she said, a week later, the Sectary to the Central
Government (SCG) informed his that his name would soon
be announced and forwarded to the national assembly as
Minister of State to replace a resigned holder.
Rita was overjoyed to hear the announcement. She hugged
him lovingly.
‘My darling, the Honorable Minister,’ she said, laughing.
‘That’s me.’
He was indeed amazed by the growing influence, power and
authority that he had. In the last two and half years, he had
risen from a Program Officer in the NGO run by the First
Lady to become Senior Special Assistant and now he would
become a junior Minister! Everything had been so meteoric!
It was an amazing phenomenon of life. His mind went to
Iye. She was his pillar and his strength. In fact, she meant
everything to him. He must strive never to do anything that
would hurt her again.
‘Let’s go and do thanksgiving in the church,’ Rita told her
husband.
‘I don’t think there would be need for that,’ he answered.
That was another thing she found odd about him. He never
agreed to such a suggestion. Most times, he would not
follow her to the church.
‘Even if a woman is helping you spiritually, you can still go
to the church and give God the glory. He is king of all
kings,’ she argued.
‘I already thank God. Must I enter a church before I thank
God?’
He was screened and cleared by security agencies and the
national assembly. Without any ado, he became the
Minister of State for Mass Media.
He received congratulatory messages from far and wide.
Success has many friends. His former colleagues in the
media, his publisher, friends and associates all felicitated
with him. Even Linda, his erstwhile Lagos babe, called to
congratulate him.
He had become a public figure. And he was a model to
other young people. At thirty-eight, it was no mean feat to
be a Minister, even a Minister of State. The Ministry he was
over-seeing was the one dealing directly with the publics –
the media houses, media hounds and the general public. He
tried to carry out his duties to the best of his ability and
not try to overshadow the senior Minister who had given
him more roles to play.
He also had direct access to the President now. He realized
that power was sweet and desirable. He could understand
why many were jostling for power and why some would see
it as do-or-die affair. Being on the seat of power especially
in a country like Nigeria gave you access to state power,
apparatuses and resources. He tried to be as diligent as
possible.
Zaynab came around to pay him a visit.
‘Congrats, Mr. Tope Davies on your appointment,’ she said
in smiles.
‘Thank you, Madam Zaynab.’
She sat in his office. ‘You must be very lucky. You’ve moved
up the political ladder so fast.’
‘Yes, I’m indeed luck. I must thank providence.’
‘Ah, we thank God.’
There was a brief silence.
‘And now that you’ve moved up here, you want to forget
your Zaynab.’
He shook his head. ‘That’s not true. You know I can never
forget you. It was wonderful working with you and other
people at the NGO.’
She made a face. ‘Is that all you can remember me for? Is
that all that Zay meant to you?’
He shook his head. ‘Oh, come on, madam, I can’t forget the
fact that you were also a good friend.’
That appeared to please her a bit. ‘I’m divorcing the
senator,’ she blurted out.
He was surprised. ‘Why would you do that?’
‘It’s a listless relationship. Once again, I made mistake of
jumping to marriage. At forty-three, I should be wiser.
Well,’ – she shrugged – ‘it’s
not too late. There’s no point in continuing an unhappy
affair. I’ve told him I’m opting out. I want the exuberant
and happy Zaynab back.’
He appeared briefly thoughtful and then shrugged. ‘Well, I
wish you the best of luck.’
He knew she was trying to rekindle his interest, but sorry,
he would no tread on that path again. He was cool in his
responses. After that day, Zay was back in his office three
months later.
‘You keep on snubbing me,’ she said.
‘That’s not true. I won’t do that. It’s just that I’ve been very
busy.’
‘So busy you cannot even spare few minutes to call an old
friend?’
He smiled. ‘You’re quite right. I’m sorry about that.’ He
studied he well and it looked like she had done a face lift.
She looked a bit prettier and younger now.
‘Can’t I have some private moments with you just to chat?’
she said in a very soft tone. He appeared to think over it. If
he was very careful, maybe it was not a bad thing.
‘If it’s just to chat, that shouldn’t be a problem.’
Her smile became very warm. ‘I’ve left the senator’s house.
I can come around on Friday by four. Then I’ll take you to
my new residence. What about that?’
He smiled too. ‘That should not be a problem.’
‘Good. On Friday, I’ll be round. I’ll take you to my new
residence and we can just talk privately.’
He nodded. ‘That should be alright.’
That Friday, Zay was around as she had said. He dismissed
his retinue of security men, leaving only an official car, a
driver and his police
orderly. His car followed Zay’s car as she led him to her
house at Wuse District. It was a white duplex that looked
exquisite. He followed her inside to the sitting-room while
the driver and the orderly waited outside.
‘This is my new place,’ she announced proudly.
‘You rented this whole place?’ he asked.
‘No. I bought it.’
He nodded to himself. Surely, Zaynab too was highly
connected.
He sat in her expansive sitting-room while she excused
herself. He took the time to look around the sitting-room
and it was easy to see that Zaynab would not stop being an
aesthete. Some few minutes later, she was back, wearing a
camisole on bum short.
‘Your children,’ he said, ‘are they around?’
‘No, they’ve gone back to school. They’re boarders.’
He nodded. ‘A nice place you have here.’
She smiled. ‘Thank you.’
She went to the in-built bar and brought a bottle of red
wine and two glasses. She poured the drinks in glasses and
handed him one. Then, she sat close to him and crossed her
legs. He wanted to avoid looking at those luscious legs, but
he could not.
‘I’m honored to have you in my house,’ she said.
‘The honor is mine.’
They sipped their drinks. ‘There’re certain things I’ve
learnt,’ she went on.
‘Like what?’
‘Like the fact that love is not always as simple as we want
it to be.’
He nodded. ‘Hmn.’
‘I’ve also learn that you should do what you like, not what
you think others expect you to do.’
He nodded without saying a word.
‘There’s also a discovery I’ve made.’
His brows went up. ‘What discovery?’

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